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Morning Digest: Idukki landslip death toll goes up to 43; SC to pronounce interim orders in Prashant Bhushan contempt case, and more

A file picture of Prashant Bhushan.

A file picture of Prashant Bhushan.   | Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

Kerala rains | Idukki landslip toll goes up to 43, many still missing

With the recovery of 17 more bodies on Sunday, the number of fatalities due to Thursday’s landslip that buried the housing quarters of tea estate workers in Pettimudy in Idukki has gone up to 43. According to officials, 23 persons are still missing, including six Forest Department staff who were staying with the workers.

China’s aggression pushing India closer to U.S. but alliance unlikely at present: Experts

The threat from China is pushing India into closer ties with the U.S. but is unlikely to yield a military ‘alliance’ at present, said experts in Delhi and Washington during a discussion on Indian Foreign Policy. In particular, former National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon and academic Pratap Bhanu Mehta felt that India’s common boundary with China and “continental challenge” still complicates its choices, referring to the nearly four-month long standoff at the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

Prashant Bhushan contempt case | Supreme Court to pronounce interim orders on August 10

The Supreme Court will pronounce on Monday its interim orders in a decade-old contempt case against noted civil rights lawyer Prashant Bhushan for his remarks about judicial “corruption” in an interview to Tehelka magazine in 2009.

Also read: Andaman and Nicobar going to be maritime and startup hub: Modi

CISF to probe ‘Are you Indian?’ taunt at DMK MP Kanimozhi

The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) on Sunday ordered an inquiry soon after DMK MP Kanimozhi’s complained that a woman officer of the paramilitary agency at the Chennai airport had asked her if she was Indian for not speaking in Hindi.

India, Pakistan spar over Indus water talks amid pandemic

India has refused a request by Pakistan to hold a meeting on issues around the Indus Water Treaty (IWT) at the Attari checkpost near the India-Pakistan border. In March India had suggested a virtual conference but Pakistan had insisted on a physical meeting, a senior official in the Ministry of Water Resources told The Hindu on Sunday.

Confusion over Sonia’s tenure as Congress chief persists

The confusion over Sonia Gandhi’s tenure as the president of the Congress party that ends on Monday continued, with calls for a more permanent arrangement from some quarters and with a section of party insisting that there is no fixed tenure for an interim president.

Also read: Four BJP leaders quit in Kashmir

Vijayawada COVID-19 centre fire | ‘A few COVID patients jump off hotel building to escape fire’

Sunday’s early morning calm gave way to terror. Patients battling COVID-19 at a hotel-turned-quarantine centre were confronted with a bigger challenge — fight a blaze.

Nepal, India in war of words over Buddha’s origins

Nepal is the land of origin of Lord Buddha, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Kathmandu asserted on Sunday after India’s External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar described the founder of Buddhism as one of the greatest Indians ever. The comment from the Indian Minister also drew a series of reactions from leading Nepalese figures, including former Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal, who said Mr. Jaishankar’s comments about Lord Buddha were “objectionable”.

Rajasthan political crisis | “Stand by truth” in Assembly session, Gehlot tells all MLAs

Ahead of the crucial Rajasthan Assembly session which could witness a floor test, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Sunday wrote a letter to all MLAs appealing to them to “stand by the truth” and defeat the attempts being made to topple his government. Mr. Gehlot asked the legislators to listen to people’s voice to save democracy.

Also read: Rahul terms draft EIA “dangerous”

Elections to party president, CWC would have a number of beneficial outcomes, says Shashi Tharoor

Senior Congress leader and Thiruvananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor in an interview to The Hindu calls for elections to the Congress Working Committee and the post of the party president to challenge the perception of the party being “adrift and rudderless, incapable of taking up the challenge of a credible national Opposition”.

Verstappen snaps Mercedes’ streak

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won Formula One’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix on Sunday to end Mercedes’ run and become Lewis Hamilton’s closest challenger. In a race dominated by tyres and strategy, Hamilton swept past Mercedes teammate and pole sitter Valtteri Bottas to take second place late in the race and stay 30 points clear in the standings.

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Printable version | Sep 27, 2020 2:00:17 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/morning-digest-august-10-2020/article32312420.ece

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